Date: 27th April 2010 at 3:58pm
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OK, let’s move the conspiracy theories out of the way: I do not believe for a minute that Liverpool will roll over for Chelsea on Sunday, even if some – although by no means all – of their fans demand precisely that. No, they will give Chelsea a proper game as it’s their last home game of the season, they owe their pride to put up a fight and they have a very faint chance but a chance nonetheless to secure 4th place and Champions League qualification. And spare me the BS about history and their players wishing to avoid handing us the 19th title: players like Agger, Insua, Kyrgiakos, Babel, Benayoun – what the hell do they care about that? They’ll play for their Liverpool careers.

Still, I don’t think they will manage to avoid defeat. Not because they won’t try but simply because they are not good enough. Liverpool will be tired after their exertions against Atl├ętico Madrid in the Europa League, they do not have their only world-class player, Fernando Torres, available and their manager is Rafa Benitez which is a handicap in itself.

Meanwhile, Chelsea are fresh and flying, they are primed for this game, they are hungry, motivated and well-prepared. And of course they are better than Liverpool in just about every position on the pitch – right-back is open to debate and as Chelsea have no fit defensive midfielder available they edge that as well but apart from these… – so they should not have too much trouble with trundling in a couple of goals.

I fully expect them to go out there, take the game to Liverpool and record a comfortable victory, 2-0 or even 3-0. Our only hope is that Liverpool are actually pretty decent at home, they conceded only 13 goals in 18 games and won 13 of these matches.

Still, there’s every chance that even if Liverpool do us a favour we will slip up at Sunderland a few hours later. Now that would be a really sickening end to our title challenge…